The beautiful hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene, motherland of the famous Prosecco Superiore Docg, have just been added to the World Heritage List of the UNESCO. The dream came true on the 7th of July 2019, in Baku, Azerbaijan, during the 43rd meeting of the Unesco Committee with 21 “yes” votes out of 21. This is not only a result we are all proud of but also a perfect excuse to pop up quite a lot of bottles of the beloved sparkling wine.
However, this great result has not happened overnight. Indeed, it took this amazing area more than 10 years to finally get on the list. Everything started out in 2008, when the Consorzio di tutela Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Docg, the association of wine producers, decided to kick off the project to make this land a World Heritage Site. At the beginning, things were not easy, especially with the setback of July 2018, when the area did not make it just for 2 votes. But you know, Italians are stubborn and do not give up so easy. This is the reason why we have come back this year focusing not only on the beauty of the landscape but also on the peculiarities that make Conegliano and Valdobbiadene so unique.
Congeliano and Valdobbiadene hills are the 10th site on Earth, which is part of the category “cultural landscape”. This list embraces the places where human work and nature have been building a special bound over the centuries. Here are the other 9 sites:
Still, the hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene, a tiny area between Venice and the Dolomites situated in the Veneto province of Treviso, have something special. First of all their soil and landform. They are characterized by the so-called hogback, very steep slopes, which are difficult and quite dangerous to work. For this reason, people had to figure out a way to improve their agricultural work in the fields and adapt themselves to this not-so-easy landscape.
Another typical feature of this area is for sure the ciglione, a particular system of terracing where the soil is not held steady by stones as it usually is in many other wine production regions (such as Valpolicella). Here instead winemakers and vine growers have been using grassy terracing to prevent the soil from moving and avoid the erosion of the soil. The result of these two elements is a stunning mosaic landscape where small vineyards, forests and grassland coexist one next to the other creating a wonderful ecosystem.
The aim achieved on Sunday is for sure a great result but at the same time, it represents a starting point for the future of Congeliano and Valdobbiadene. That is why, for example, the area is working on becoming a free-of-pesticide environment. Protecting the biodiversity is in fact a priority to preserve the beauty and the ecosystem of the landscape. Same thing for wine tourism: it has to respect winemakers’ philosophy, their vineyards, their work and show people the treasure this area hides. And this is exactly what Pagus does. Ready to discover the Prosecco hills, visit some family-owned wineries and taste some the most famous Italian sparkling wine? Then join us on our Prosecco wine tour and let us show you the beauty of this area.